What is all this "U" stuff and how are teams formed?
"U" stands for Under (8U is under8). Players are assigned to divisions based on their birth year. For 10U and below, every attempt is made to divide teams into similar mixes of ages and sexes.
How old does my kid need to be to play?
For the Fall 2022 season, your kid must be born in 2018 or before. Kids age up in soccer with the school season, so the fall 2023 season, kids born in 2019 will be eligible to play.
What kind of ball does the player need?
6U and 8U use a size 3 ball; 10U and 12U use a size 4 ball; 13U and up use a size 5 ball.
What about shoes?
Recreation League layers do not have to wear cleats, tennis or gym shoes are permitted. If the player does wear cleats the rules specify that the cleats must be "soft cleated soccer shoes". When purchasing shoes make sure to get a soccer cleat as baseball/softball and football cleats are made differently. Soccer cleats are required for all Travel League players. Football and baseball cleats are not allowed.
What about shorts, socks, shin guards and shirts?
6U - 10U Recreation League - RLSA supplies team t-shirts; players need to have a pair of socks and shin guards.
6U - 10U Recreation League - Socks must be worn over the players shin guards.
10U Travel - 19U - Players must purchase their own uniforms from Northwoods Promotions and blue uniform socks from a store or from the association. Shin guards and cleats are also required.
When are the seasons?
We offer two seasons of soccer every year. Spring season typically runs late April to early June and fall season runs mid August to early October. Players can chose to play just one season or both seasons each year.
We don’t want to travel and would rather just play kids in the area.
Travel League: Without the ability to play teams from others areas your child (U11/I12+) would have no one to play games against. At the U12 and U15 level internally we may have one or two teams at each level. In order to have games to play, we must be able to travel to surrounding areas. We typically host one home event and travel 3-4 additional weekends every season. Teams work successfully to make transportation arrangements so that no child is left out if he/she is unable to schedule a ride to get to a game.
Recreation League: All games are held at Moon Lake Park against other teams in the RLSA.
When are the games?
Travel League: Games are usually played on Saturdays throughout the season. A master schedule is developed and followed as closely as possible. Each team is provided with a schedule and as a club we work very hard to let you know what that schedule will be as early as we can. Each of the games that your child plays will follow WYSA youth rules governing substitutions, penalties, game length and team rosters. Typically all games include three paid referees: a center referee and two line referees.
Recreation League: Games are played on Mondays and Wednesdays during the normal practice time.
What will I need to provide for my child?
Travel League: Your child will need to have a ride to and from practice two nights a week. Additionally there will be away games on Saturdays with the possibility of 2-3 weekends where games may fall Friday-Sunday.
Tournaments provide an opportunity to stay overnight but are not required as most are within 150 miles of Rice Lake. You will need to purchase a uniform that can hopefully be used for 2 or more seasons depending on how quickly your player grows. Travel players also need blue socks, cleats, shin guards, and a size 4 or 5 ball.
Rec League - An appropriate size ball, shin guards, and socks. A team t-shirt will be provided.
Why do we play in tournaments/jamborees?
Tournaments provide an outlet to travel and are an important way to test a team’s skills against a wider set of opponents. Coaches can use tournaments as a way of establishing goals for the season (e.g. a team builds up all season using regular season games to prepare for the tournament.) Our club hosts a jamboree providing a balance of travel and home. Historically our association has participated in tournaments/jamborees in the Hayward, Ashland/Bayfield, Eau Claire, and the Minneapolis St Paul suburb areas.
Why do different ages cost different amounts?
6U is the least expensive as the costs for this age group are very low. The coaches are typical first or second year soccer parents. No referees are used at this age. In 8U, paid referees are introduced. The extra cost helps offset the cost of reffing the games. In 10U, it is likely that some of the coaches are licensed and refs cost even more at this age. For the travel league (12U+) it is required that the coaches be licensed and they are paid a very small sum for coaching. Each travel team can spend anywhere from $1200-$2500 on tournament registration fees, which, even when divided between 14-20 players, adds up fast. It is not uncommon for Rice Lake to play against other teams who charge $500-$1000 PER PLAYER in fees, so we are proud that we are able to keep our fees so low with our great volunteers.